Michael 84

iPad review – Who is it for? iPad/iPhone/Touch comparisions

Tech Blog
Thursday, 28th January, 2010

Now we know about the iPad, we know the spec, we have an idea of the price, but WHO is the device marketed at?

the iPad has had lots of negativity and criticism directed to it from the Apple fanboys, in an Apple Internet forum around 70% of people said they would not be buying one…These are Apple fans, so how is it going to go down with the mainstream?

Engadget posted a comparison iPhone VS ipad for 3g, and the costs, and in their comparison the iPad worked out as a much cheaper device. This is NOT the case. They did not factor in 1 thing, the iPad is not a phone! A mobile phone is an essential device these days, and i doubt anyone would have an iPad without having a mobile phone.

So who will buy this device? What is it for? I really do not know. If you use a computer at home, you will be using either a desktop or a laptop. If you are traveling day-to-day for example on the bus, train, or to work and want light use you will use your iPhone or touch if you have 1. If you need something more powerful for travel, if you go on holiday or away for a few days you will use a laptop. It fits between a laptop, and a smartphone, but do we need something in between those? I dont think so.

iPad is Apple’s netbook? This was touched on at their event, but really, its not. A netbook is an inexpensive laptop, this is not. This is a large expensive itouch.

What you dont get

If you buy the WIFI version you do not get 3g (obviously) and do not get GPS. You also still do not get Flash, so cannot run flash apps or websites; There are plenty big websites running flash, for example the BBC, so you will not be able to get some of their media content. You also dont get texting and calls, which is obvious since its not a phone. If you go for the 3g version, there will be a monthly cost, and many current plans are for a fixed term (e.g. 12 months).

Check out my breakdown of the cost, i believe this is the only true comparison:

16GB Models Comparison
iPad 3g
iPhone Contract
iPhone PAUG
Upfront Cost
£499*
£189
£449
Monthly Cost inc. 3g access
£30
£35
0
Yearly Cost inc. 3g access
£859
£609
£449
18 Month Cost inc. 3g access
£1039
£819
£509
2 Year Cost inc. 3g access
£1219
£929 (£89 iphone)
£569
NOTES   
  • Prices are for the 16GB iPad, 16GB iPhone 3GS and 16GB PAUG iPhone 3GS
  • * iPad predicted cost – The actual cost is TBA
  • Prices for 3g are taken from the o2 website
  • 1 month contract with 10GB 3g is £30/month
  • Unlimited 3g is included with the £35/month iPhone plan.
  • The PAUG includes 12 months of unlimited 3g, then you must top up £10/month
  • The 2yr contract iPhone is £89 upfront rather than £189.

The iPhone Pay As You Go looks cheap here in comparison having a contract, but remember this does not include any calls, texts or anything like that. Simply free 3g access. My choice out of the 3 for price, is the iPhone on contract.

So the iPad is actually very expensive. Lets not forget, you have to factor in the cost of a mobile phone, as this isnt a phone whereas the iPhone obviously is! So even if you go for a free phone (which you wont, if you are geeky enough to have an iPad you will want a geeky phone) and contract at £30/month that is another £360/year on top of the iPad and its 3g usage. Even if the iPad is not at my predicted £499 cost, it is £250 MORE than the iPhone, and we know that it will not be £250 under £499.

So, after looking at all of this, considering all the good and bad points, what have i decided? I have decided that this is a cool gadget to have, but nothing more. It costs too much, it isnt going to replace something, and isnt going to be an addition to something either. There is no room in the market for this. You buy a laptop because you want/need a portable computer. You buy a mobile phone because you want a mobile phone. You buy an iPad because….There is no reason.


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Michael Adams

About Michael

Michael Adams is the founder and editor of Michael 84, blogger and T-shirt designer from Newcastle, UK. Sharing men's fashion tips, style advice and lifestyle information for all guys.

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